Wednesday, 30 April 2008

Chicken house finished

Finally, over budget, over time, over size it is complete luxury accommodation for four lucky hens is finished. It doesn't look too bad from the distance but no matter what I make, no matter how carefully I cut and measure it all goes wonky, I can't even blame the children who helped me it is down to me and lack of the DIY gene.

We were going to get some ex-battery hens so they could live out the lives in comfort but they are quite difficult to get hold of and I didn't want to confront any defensive factory egg producers. The other reason was that because we have never had hens before new healthy ones would be easier to learn with. I must confess growing up we never had pets except for some fish who always died.

The pictures are the front of the Henhouse Hilton and the big chicken inside is Emily, Cameron was also in but he has reverted to poohing himself so he was removed and put (after a quick change) into his bedroom.

We are going to get the hens on Friday.

Raspberry Ivory

We have had this one for 2 summers and the we have had only a few rather small berries so far.

Tuesday, 29 April 2008

Mad dash to the toilet

We think Cameron is having problems knowing when to go the toilet. He will say pooh so we take him and when we get there he can't go. This is becoming a great inconvenience because he is doing it in the middle of the supermarket so I have to abandon the groceries grab him and Emily and get him to the loo. Today we went out to Napier , Teresa took the children to buy underwear and I caught up with them to have a coffee after meeting clients. As soon as we were not near a toilet Cameron wanted to go aagh!!!! (I was saying something else in my head). Luckily for me I have a sixth sense, intuition about the location of toilets or maybe it was growing up with a dad who was cursed with a weak bladder and we were constantly on the lookout for lavatories for him. He was even given a fake toilet inspectors card one year as a present. Anyway for whatever the reason I always seem to make a note of where the nearest loo is and today was no exception, with no hesitation or thought for personal safety I slung Cameron over my shoulder and make the mercy dash. We arrive only to see some woman dive in before us, we wait what seemed like an eternity. I was relieved when the woman came out, I whipped Cameron's thunderpants off, threw him on the loo and ... he couldn't go.

Raspberry Ebony

I must come clean on this one. We have had this in the ground for 2 summers now and we have yet to see any sign of fruit. But we live in hope.

Chicken house not quite finished

Almost not quite had to do more work on the floor than I wanted to. Didn't have one piece of wood large enough so had to cobble 3 pieces together.
Yesterday spent the morning with a client talking though designs and then onto the accountants.
This morning seeing a representive from Awuahawks about organising their content this is rearranged from yesterday.

Good 1200m swim last night giving myself thinking time between each length. The search for the perfect lap/length of the pool continues. Working on keeping head down a bit more with eyes almost looking back seems to really bring the legs up making kicking better and more effective. I finished with 4x25m swimming 'harder' (this is a relative term because you can't swim hard in fistgloves you have to swim with finesse) more thrust with hand entry = stronger kicking =faster swimming.

Monday, 28 April 2008

Go faster bike product

I have been wanting one for a while -it is the Look ergo stem.
I took my old Specialized race bike into the bike shop looking to see if there was any way of lowering my handlebars because since I changed my stem for a modern one the my knees hit the new one when I put in a big effort on the bike. (I ride in a very aggressive forward position.) So I decided the only option apart from buying a new bike frame would be the stem.

I've always had a long stem so this variable one will allow me to experiment with shorter length and a bigger drop to try and get my back flat. Body position on the bike is the cheapest and most effective way to get faster for the same effort. I am going to try a lower tri bar position than ever before but I am a 1000% (one thousand %) more flexible now than in my 20's and 30's so I should be able to do it.

This innovative stem provides all the options for the serious cyclist. Allows total adjustability for anyone who desires the custom position or needs a stem that allows different positions for different events.

Saturday, 26 April 2008

Weekly training

Weekly Training for 21-27 Apr 2008
Swim2 sessions with fist gloves. Missed one because pool was closed for ANZAC day. 2600metres
Bike2 hour indoor trainer rides32.67miles
Run3runs at 5am6miles

Fowl mood!

I've been in a foul(fowl) mood lately or to be more precise the last two days. I don't know what it is I just get fed up with everything and everybody, I get bored, irritable, etc, etc. Partly caused by needing a break from the family. It doesn't take much a couple of trips out to the organic food shop the DIY shop on my own usually does it.

The chicken house is on schedule for completion by the end of tomorrow. Picture will be posted when finished as will more gratuitous pictures of the fruit we have in the garden. Why? I hear you ask. Because I can or in my son's words 'want to'.

Tomorrow, Sunday I will be making a greater effort to publish my training details (this blog is supposed to be triathlon related) and share the details of a rare purchase that I hope will make me go faster for no extra effort... and no it's not illegal.

Be safe, never trust a motorist who isn't a cyclist.

Friday, 25 April 2008


Luckily all the elements on the right sidebar had been saved all was not lost. I opted to just choose a different template that fitted a new banner I made just for fun and as it happens the template was designed by no less than css and web standards guru - Jeffrey Zeldman. So I am going to find time and do my own template and continue to learn from the master.

This must be my millionth post today , a refuge from the children .

Till the next installment. Stay safe


I can't help myself. I want to change the way my blog looks and naturally I wanted to see what everything does. This curiousity has helped me learn absolutely lots but sometimes my fiddling causes more work this blog is a case in point. I lost all my sidebar stuff which I was perfectly happy with. As usual I will enjoy putting it back and will benefit from the experience.

Chilean Guavas


Red currants

Chicken run complete

The chicken run is complete just got to build the chicken house (children's words). Having changed the plan (nothing new here) due to cost of wood etc, etc, I'm not sure how I'm going to do it yet. Watch this space . I've promised it will be finished by Sunday so we can get the chickens next week. Then I can start blocking up the disused fire place and chimney ready for the winter.

What the ? Kurt Cobain will be turning in his grave

There are somethings are just not to be . Paul Anka singing Smells like Teen spirit.



You decide

Tuesday, 22 April 2008

I love this video and it never fails to motivate

This video by Mitch Thrower and his blog was the first blog I read and is the reason I started reading other blogs and then started blogging myself.
The video nevers fails to raise my motivation or mood should they start to flag.

You don't know me mitch but thanks.

Unexpected arrival

A few posts ago I mentioned that I'd ordered Teresa's Christmas present now because the company said they would only be ready for Novemberish. Today a courier van turned up, I usually see it arrive from my desk/office/corner of the dining room (I do have a big desk though). I was expecting a book from the WDA web designers association (complimentary - called 'the internet unmasked'- I'm not a member my clients are not bothered about a logo which I would have to pay for. They just want someone they can talk to in plain English and see what I can do and be affordable ) The arrival was the banana plant, there is no way I can hide it for 8months so now I've got to think of another surprise. Teresa is off the opinion that we shouldn't buy anymore because even with a quarter acre section there is only so much space. At the weekend we did buy one more blueberry bush and the last two of our chilean guava plants that will eventually complete the hedge at the bottom of the deck.

Speaking of my clients earlier in the post I have acquired a new one. An established shop called Baby Heaven which has changed hands and the new owner wants an online shop, she had been quoted $10 000 by a local big firm (she only wants basic not flying to the moon and back technology). I expained that I was low on experience with ecommerce but was trying to get more and I thought that we could benefit each other. I would get low stress experience and she would get a working online shop very cheaply. And my other current client Aquahawks swimming club have asked for online shopping for goggles , etc But they insisted that I put extra on the invoice for extras because I was working so cheaply, I tried to protest!!! I know Jane from the club so I was doing them 'mates rates' 20% discount. The club have been given funding for it and had to pay the full invoice before acertain date which goes against the way I usually work but I'm not complaining.

The Aquahawks job is especially pleasing because somebody else competing for it made me feel stupid a few years ago when I was starting out. I had been to see him at his office (by his invitation) about the possibility of doing some work and I left feeling very small and foolish. Any way things have moved on since then.

Saturday, 19 April 2008

I've finally done it.

I've been a vegetarian for about 17 years and always wanted to be a vegan. It sounds daft but the clothes put me off. I realised yesterday whilst reading the Vegetarian society magazine in the library that I now longer had a reason not to be vegan. I looked at my clothes, life style, anti-consumerist, living simply, enviromental , frugal, get rich (money and the most precious commodity -TIME) slowly lifestyle. I decided it was time. Like becoming vegetarian in the first place there will be challenges, you would be surprised at the ingredients in some products but I will adapt. I am compiling a list of blogs, websites that are going to help me and links to vegan beer and wine after all man cannot live on bread alone.

Alan Gore -champion for the Earth

No words are needed. Just watch.

Sunday, 13 April 2008

A Sunday in Autumn 2008

It is autumn-
this means picking up baskets of walnuts, then raking leaves

This is what they look like when they are getting ready to fall. Photo taken from a low hanging branch.

Second season of red raspberries, there are more and they are getting larger.
Veggie garden being extended and lined with bricks recycled from other parts of the garden.
The much improved composting area. Composting really works.
We wanted to plant a hedge around the bottom of the front deck, it had to produce fruit. We found Chilean Guava plants dirt cheap at the garden centre NZ$6- we bought 12 so far we need another 2. Should produce exactly what we want in a few years time.This what they look like and they taste yummy.
Emily on the trampoline.
Cameron on the trampoline.
I've also ordered 3 Goji berry plants and a banana tree for later in the year. The Goji are Teresa's christmas present to me and the banana tree is my present to Teresa. Don't where we are going to put them yet, some of the unproductive trees are probably going to be cut down for firewood.

I am really focussing on swimming . In the pool with the fist gloves 3times and swimcords building specific swim strength and in the summer I am going to swim once a week in Pandora's pond.

Bike: 2 sessions a week of michael mccormack style intervals but I've lowered my heart rate.

Running: 4miles total adding one mile a week. I was finding it mentally very to do a lot of running at 5am. So I decided over the winter to do more swimming and cycling which are done either inside or in daylight until the summer.

It feels good to get all that out of my brain.

Saturday, 5 April 2008

The global classroom - open your mind

Being someone addicted to learning with lots of interests the internet is highly addictive. It is much more interesting than television, the place I go to watch triathlon, keep up with international politics, I now know Teresa and I are not the only ones who want an edible garden, live simply but be rich, love our kids completely, listen to some of the best minds and get to know athletes you respect.

The art of non-conformity

And so many more